Recently, my husband, Sean, and I learned the bookkeeper for one of his former employers is accused of stealing $1.4 million over 10 years.
According to an article which appeared in the Morning Call, Allentown, PA, the firm’s bookkeeper and her husband were each charged July 27 with theft by unlawful taking or disposition, theft by deception, theft by failure to make required disposition of funds, receiving stolen property and criminal conspiracy, all first-degree felonies.
The bookkeeper’s husband was charged because he enjoyed the benefits of what the district attorney described as a “lavish” lifestyle made possible by the thefts. The couple used the money to buy boats, artwork, cars and vacations, says the Morning Call article.
We never became close friends with the couple but we did socialize with them — and not just at company functions. We had these people over to our house. We went out to dinner with them.
Looking back, that just seems so creepy.
Ultimately, the budding friendship never went anywhere. The bookkeeper and I had been Facebook friends and I posted something about not being interested in the wedding Prince William and Kate Middleton. For some reasons, she found this very offensive, bawled me out online and then unfriended me.
At the time I was annoyed. I thought it was a ridiculous reason to unfriend some one but, in retrospect, I’m glad it happened. I would hate to think Sean and I might have become close friends with a pair of alleged thieves.
The civil engineering company she and my husband worked for took a hit when the housing market tanked in 2008. Numerous times, the owner had to lay off employees in order to keep the company viable. He was always looking for ways to save a buck. No wonder!
Meanwhile, she was allegedly giving him falsified reports while allegedly stealing an average of $114,000 a year — more than $11,000 a month — more than enough to pay the salaries of those who lost their jobs.
Though Sean was not among those laid off, I still feel angry to think she was allegedly taking not only money from her employer but also from her coworkers. Did she ever feel a twinge of guilt? Did she have any empathy for those laid off?
I don’t know the answers to those questions. All I know is that I’m blown away.
I hope there’s some way for restitution to be made — and not just through minimal monthly payments. If the pair is found guilty, their assets should be seized and sold to benefit their victim. He put his investments on the line for his company and worked hard for his money. He deserves to get it back.